ROOTS OF HOPE - The Native Child and Family Services Community Action-Based Project



Thunder Bay

The Native Child and Family Services (NCFS) graduating class of 2021, despite COVID-19, still planned their culminating Community Action-Based project, which is a student-led initiative from start to finish. Their project is called: "Roots of Hope, Planting Change for Tomorrow's Future". 

The "Roots of Hope" idea came about after many discussions and concerns from students about the ongoing issue(s) of homelessness in Thunder Bay, especially during the harsh winter months. This past winter (2020-2021), our community lost seven (7) community members who froze to death on the streets of Thunder Bay because of a lack of safe and adequate housing.

The student's action plan includes planting a memorial tree accompanied by a plaque to acknowledge and recognize the lives we lost. The purpose of our memorial tree is to publicize the need for more help for our homeless population and also to have a place where these lives can be honoured and visited by friends, family members, and members of our community. The remaining monetary donations will be divided equally and presented to S.O.S and P.A.C.E organizations that support our homeless population in Thunder Bay.

After some fundraising, students were able to purchase a Manitoba Maple tree that will be planted on the College property in the newly planned Indigenous Garden along with a small engraved monument, "To honour those who have lost their lives to homelessness".  Due to recent restrictions in place, students will continue to plan with their Program Coordinator during the spring to have a tree planting event, hopefully sometime in June.  We hope you can attend this event either in person or virtually and if you can take a walk on our beautiful College property to visit the tree in the future.

The students would also like to say "Chi-Miigwech" to those that made donations to support this initiative and to all the College staff who helped students make this plan come to life.

CONGRATULATIONS to the class of 2021 for your resilience and perseverance despite these unprecedented times! You should be so proud!